substitute coconut cream for coconut milk

How to substitute coconut cream for coconut milk or is it actually possible? Have you ever found yourself in the middle of cooking a delicious creamy chicken curry or a buttered chicken and suddenly realized you are out of coconut milk?

Now that’s undoubtedly every person’s nightmare! I mean, who would want to leave in the middle of cooking?

If ever that scenario happens, there is no need to panic and hurriedly get in your car, drive off to the store and purchase the milk because we certainly got you covered.

As long as you have the cream in your fridge, we can teach you the methods and ways on how can you substitute coconut cream for coconut milk smoothly, so go forth and read on!

Coconut Cream vs Coconut Milk

coconut cream vs coconut milk

Before we start with the guide, let’s first know the difference between the two.

In contrast to the fruit’s water, which is the transparent and natural juice you find when you open it up, coconut cream and milk are both made by boiling up the fruit’s meat using water.

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As expected, the difference between them is consistency and concentration.

Coconut Milk

It has the consistency of dairy milk and is created from simmering one part of water and another part of shredded coconut. The milk is typically the base of many Thai curries.

Coconut Cream

Is much richer and thicker. It is mainly made by simmering one part of water and four pieces of shredded coconut. The substance that rises on top of the milk is considered the cream.

The Advantages of Using Coconuts

What used to be a normal fruit is now a big part of our daily lives and as well as diet. The fruit has truly many advantages not only for our health but also for different purposes in life.

There are many advantages to using this tropical fruit and today we talk about some to give you an insight into what you are benefiting from!

It Can Promote Blood Sugar Control

Since the fruit is high in fat and fiber but low in carbs, it is an excellent substitute for those people on a diet or who are diabetic.

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You can eat it as a fruit or use it as an ingredient for your keto diet recipes and many more!

You Can Use It for Many Things

Whether it’s for your diet, your hair, your skin, or even your face, there are a lot of advantages this fruit can give you.

  • It can make your hair shiny, silky, and thick.
  • It softens the skin and can remove dark spots on your face,
  • It is very nutritious and healthy for your diet.

It Has Good Antioxidants

The fruit has several antioxidants such as P-coumaric acid, Gallic acid, Salicylic acid, and Caffeic acid, which help in protecting your blood cells.

It can also prevent the oxidation of bad cholesterol, helping you to less likely build up plaques in arteries which can potentially lead you to the risk of heart disease.

Is Substituting Possible?

Depending on what purpose, dish, or drink you’re making, the substitution is possible!

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The two are used for different purposes, but there are times when you can utilize either of the two.

In other words, you can use the fruit’s milk if you want flavorful that is a bit watery and the cream for making something more concrete.

Now that you know substitution is possible let’s now head to the method on how to thicken coconut milk into cream!

Methods to Substitute Coconut Cream for Coconut Milk

can you substitute coconut cream for coconut milk

When cooking, it’s natural to lack a particular ingredient, but that shouldn’t stop you from making your ideal dish. There are several ways on how to thicken coconut milk into cream to substitute that ingredient for a specific dish!

  • Cup of water
  • Coconut cream

First Method

Simply put 2 tbsp cream and ¾ cup of water in a blender and mix it until it is smooth. You can also use an immersion blender.

(Optional) If you are utilizing the milk for baking or cooking, the steps above are enough. However, if you are planning to drink it, let the substance thicken and use a cheesecloth to strain it before serving.

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Second Method

Stir 2 tbsp of cream into ¾ hot water until it is dissolved.

Keep in mind: this recipe usually thickens about 20 minutes after it is mixed together so if ever you think it’s still too thick, we suggest you wait until you add more water.

Recipes You Can Substitute the Milk

coconut milk substitutes recipes

For Curry Recipes

If you plan to cook chicken curry or any type of curry dish and don’t have any milk in the store, you can simply use the cream instead.

But take note, if you don’t want your curry to be thick, you can add water or follow the transformation steps above.

For Home-made Sundae

If you are lactose-intolerant or maybe just want to try something new and want to make your own sundae, you can use the fruit as a substitution for dairy.

Sundae made of the fruit usually utilizes the milk version; however, if you don’t have milk cream can be used as a substitute.

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For Pina Colada Drink

This tropical cocktail based on rum that was made famous by Puerto Rico is a mixed flavor of coconut and pineapple.

If you only have cream, you can quickly transform this into milk and substitute it as an ingredient for the Pina colada drink.

However, keep in mind that if you don’t want your Pina colada to be too sweet, avoid using the cream of coconut.

For Soups

Soups made by coconut base are undeniably impressive. Countless soups around the world consist of fruit as one of the main ingredients.

Soups such as carrot soup, vegetable soup, corn soup, chicken soup, and many more!

If you ever find yourself lacking coconut milk and want to make a tasty and healthy soup, then take out your cream, mix it with water and start making your soup.

For Vegan Pastas

Are you a die-hard pasta lover but can’t eat that much because you’re on a diet? Not to worry, using coconut milk as the base for your pasta sauce can help you enjoy your meal without feeling guilty about the calories!

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However, if you don’t have the milk with you, you can use the cream as a second option.

The cream is excellent for pasta too since its thick and rich flavor boosts up the pasta’s taste. Not to mention it has that milky aftertaste that would have you asking for more.


Now that you know how you can substitute coconut cream for coconut milk, you are now equipped with the knowledge and skills to save your dish whenever you are having trouble with obtaining your ingredient.

Coconut cream and milk are both key elements that make a recipe better and even tasty so you must understand how they work, how they can be used, and how they can be substituted.

With the new information you have gotten, we hope that this article has helped and addressed all your questions and concerns!

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